The indescribable pain of losing a loved one cannot be healed with the force of the law. However, the law can help you to continue on with the added stress of losing your support system. The sudden and unexpected loss of a spouse or partner’s income only complicates a seemingly impossible time. Losing a loved one to the careless actions of another is not fair. Illinois law recognizes this and seeks to compensate the one aspect that the law can help with, your finances.
A Wrongful Death Claim
Under Illinois law, a person may bring a wrongful death claim on behalf of the deceased if they demonstrate that:
* They are the spouse, or next of kin, of the deceased. When the deceased leaves no spouse or next of kin, medical providers or those responsible for the estate of the deceased may be entitled to recover.
* The person who is being sued, the defendant, owed a legal duty to the deceased. The duty that is owed to the deceased changes based on the relationship between the deceased and the defendant. Certain defendants are held to a higher duty than others; for example, a doctor performing surgery will have a higher duty to a patient than a stranger would to an injured jogger on a hiking trail.
* The defendant breached their duty to the deceased. Once you understand the duty imposed on the defendant, you must establish that their actions didn’t conform to that duty.
* They have now sustained monetary damages as a result of this breach of duty to the deceased. Monetary damages are those financial contributions made through the deceased’s life, including money, benefits, goods, and services.
If you have lost a loved one and need to secure your financial future, the law firm of Woodruff Johnson & Palermo has the expertise you need. With years of experience in wrongful death claims, ranging from auto accidents to medical malpractice, our Elgin wrongful death lawyers have the skills necessary to ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
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